A grandmother of three who worked day and night to create a special quilt in memory of the 96 Liverpool FC fans who died in the Hillsborough disaster is ‘absolutely made up’ to find it will go on display at the Museum of Liverpool.
Linda Whitfield, who lives in John Nicholas Crescent, Ellesmere Port, spent months gathering old football shirts, cutting out the Liver Birds and stitching them together, working around the clock to create the moving tribute.
Backed by kind messages from people worldwide, Linda said at the time she hoped her creation would be shared with the people of Liverpool and serve as a lasting tribute to the 96, a view she said the families shared.
Linda posted on Facebook: “My quilt will be officially unveiled to the public on April 5 at the Museum of Liverpool. This is exciting news for everyone who was involved in the quilt as well as me.
“Once again I would like to say a massive thank you for all your help and support. Without you this would not have been possible.”
Speaking to The Chronicle, Linda said she was ‘absolutely made up’ the quilt was to be on display.
“It’s been a long time and everyone has been asking, even the grandchildren,” she said.
A phone call a couple of weeks ago had confirmed the date it would go on display.
Linda’s husband Rob, 49, an avid Liverpool FC supporter, first gave her the idea for the quilt when they were sat at home one day listening to the news and a bulletin about the inquest came on.
Linda explained: “The idea he came up with was 96 shirts with the Liver Birds cut out and the names of every person that died sewn in.”
Linda appealed for shirts on Facebook and although donations were initially slow, she was overwhelmed with the response from everyone from friends to total strangers.
She says she could not have finished the project without the help of Mark Bond, owner of The Uniform Shop in Whitby Road.
Mark made labels containing all the names for Linda’s project and gave them to her for free. Linda was later nominated in the Pioneer’s Your Champions 2015.
The 1989 Hillsborough disaster claimed the lives of 96 Liverpool FC fans. Among those who died were three from Ellesmere Port – James Delaney, 19, James Hennessy, 29 and Christopher Edwards, 29.